I recently left a comment on the article written by Alfie in relation to some of the improvements Blaine is making on his footwork. My comment was in reference to the picture associated with the article and how it could be a factor in Blaine's overall mechanics, not just his footwork. I can't recall where or when I heard/read this, but I think it was someone from the coaching staff saying Blaine needed work on keeping his shoulders leveled and squared with his feet before he throws. I'm under the assumption that doing these two things will allow a QB to generate more force with their throws and also to be more accurate, as that creates balance, thus allowing you to take full advantage of the biomechanical movement that is throwing a football. This movement is discussed and provides in-depth links in Eric Stoners article of "Blaine Gabbert: What Can Be Done? (Part 1)". In my original comment on this, I also said that I think this is also associated with the things coach Bratkowski touched on about getting Blaine to not drop back as far, getting him to stop dipping at the top of his drop and having him slow his feet down during the drop back. I think all of this goes hand in hand in tightening the throwing motion, which is imperative when it comes to the short period of time a QB has in the pocket. Of course, this is all from my observation and shouldn't be taken as any truth. I linked this article a while ago, but I'm going to do so again, as it relates to the topic of discussion.
Dr. Yessis Analyzes Blaine Gabbert (via doctoryessis)
I find this video relevant because it discusses how Blaine's natural throwing motion wasn't allowing him to use all of the kinetic energy that can be generated from throwing with proper mechanics. He also indicated that throwing with sound technique cannot only generate more force in your throws, but also increases a player's accuracy. This is basically a drawn out explanation of the biomechanics of Blaine's particular throwing style and the little things that all QB's can do to improve upon theirs. I think this ties directly back to the original point about Blaine's shoulder level and him having his feet and shoulders squared, as I would imagine these two things would play a role in optimizing one's throwing mechanics.
To illustrate my point, I found a few pictures to show why I think this could be important and how it appears to be something Blaine is improving upon.
As you can see in the photos, one from college, one from last year (a wider shot of the one Alfie used that started this train of thought) and the other a recent one taken at the one of the team's OTA practices. It's clear to see that Blaine's throwing mechanics followed him from college and weren't much improved on in his shortened offseason last year. Fast forward to now and you can see a night in day difference, especially in regards to his shoulder level. While you can't see how his feet is placed, if you project how he is standing, it would indicate that he his stranding straight up, possibly meaning his feet and shoulders are indeed squared.
Again, I'm not claiming to know exactly what I'm talking about here but it does make a lot of sense to me. My hope is that, even if I'm right or not, these improvements he is making leads to more throws like this one.
We'll see soon enough if it does and whether or not what I'm saying holds any merit or not. Either way, I'm expecting him to be much better than he was last year.
Does having an even shoulder level and having your shoulders and feet squared appear to hold any importance when it comes to proper QB mechanics?
Yes (very significant) (288 votes)
Yes (but only a little) (80 votes)
No (not enough to make a difference) (7 votes)
No (totally insignificant) (6 votes)
Hard to tell (32 votes)
413 total votes